The individual in a matrix organization

Although matrix management has emerged as a common method for managing projects, it is not yet fully defined, particularly in regard to the relationships that individuals in matrix organizations must develop and maintain. This article defines some of these relationships and identifies--using concepts from organizational behavior--some of the problems that individuals working in matrix organizations confront while attempting to maintain relationships with co-workers. In doing so, it explains the structure of a matrix organization and describes the benefits and pitfalls of using a matrix project management method. It then examines the problems individuals encounter when realizing projects in matrix organizations, problems related to working for two bosses--the functional manager and the project manager--and problems related to fulfilling an individual's professional and personal needs, problems such as reward structure, project team location, matrix group type and culture, professional development, performance mode, and socialization. It also identifies the qualities of those project managers who are most effective in leading project teams in matrix organizations. It concludes by suggesting two questions that could guide future research on this topic.
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